Kevin Muscat says attack may have to be his team's best form of defence after watching Melbourne Victory scramble a point in a 2-2 draw at home to Jeonbuk Motors on Wednesday.
Victory led at half-time in the AFC Champions League group-stage game courtesy of Nick Ansell's header, but they were slowly pushed back into their own defensive third by the visitors from Korea.
A quick-fire brace from Lee Dong Gook saw the K-League heavyweights take the lead, and Victory needed Kosta Barbarouses' late strike on the counter to claim a share of the spoils.
With his team's second-half capitulation away to Guangzhou Evergrande on match-day one in mind, Muscat believes Victory must show more determination to retain possession in advanced areas.
"I suppose it throws us back to China a little bit," he said referring to when Victory surrendered a 2-0 half-time lead to lose 4-2 against the reigning ACL champions.
"Just wanting to do so much to not concede and it probably helps (the opposition). Because everyone is trying to come back and trying to run towards the ball to help their team-mate when going the other way, as we've seen from our (second) goal, causes them a problem.
"They stepped right on us in the second half because we didn't make enough runs going the other way and that stops us from keeping possession of the ball."
With a tough trip to face Perth Glory coming up on Saturday, Muscat made no apologies for his decision to leave out the likes of Archie Thompson, Pablo Contreras and James Troisi.
"We've got a number of games (coming up)," he said.
"That's how it's going to have to be. Expect it again in the future.
"You can't play through every game with the same bodies.
"From game to game, I'll pick a team, one that we think is good enough to win the football game but at the same time understanding the amount of games we've got and the work load we've got going forward. It's just the nature of business."